You may be surprised to learn that every 12 seconds a person sustains some type of brain injury here in America. Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are some of the most serious personal injuries that can result from a car accident. In fact, the majority of TBIs reported are the result of motor vehicle accidents, and around half of those hospitalized because of car accident TBIs experience long-term disability. The other leading causes of TBIs include participation in contact sports, such as football or soccer, and accidental slips and falls.
The costs associated with treating a TBI vary and aren’t just financial in nature. In addition to costly medical bills and regular doctor visits, you are also facing a long road to rehabilitation, and might never fully recover the ability to perform regular tasks that were once easy to complete. This is because TBIs can irreparably disturb your motor skills, behavior, mood and cognition. The result could be your inability to operate a vehicle, or to even work at your job. In order to recover from such a life-altering event, you will require some form of therapy as well as compassionate care and support from professionals you can trust.
Rehabilitation After Your Traumatic Brain Injury
TBIs occur when an external force causes a brain function alteration, impairment or other brain pathology. Even in car accidents where the damage to the car is minimal, there is still the possibility that a TBI could occur, resulting in lasting changes to the sufferer’s life, health and well-being. This is because all it takes is driver negligence to cause one wrong movement of your head, or impact with a steering wheel or other object, and your brain’s ability to function properly can be irreparably altered.
The severity of your brain injury will determine which form of treatment and rehabilitation that you need. Rehabilitation for your TBI can be conducted at a hospital, outpatient department, inpatient rehabilitation unit, or a specialized TBI rehabilitation center. TBI rehabilitation may involve either one, or a combination of the following types of therapies:
- Language/Speech Therapy: Some TBIs cause damage to the part of the brain that controls speech and language. This therapy often focuses on helping patients regain their ability to communicate verbally and/or through writing.
- Physical Therapy: Focuses on improving your overall strength and fitness following a TBI. Also used to help with general physical abilities, in addition to providing assistance with re-learning daily activities.
- Cognitive Therapy: This type of therapy is used to enhance the brain’s independence and functioning following trauma.
- Occupational/Vocational Therapy: Provides assistance with relearning how to perform the common functions of a patient’s work or profession. May also assist with finding a new job or position when you can no longer perform your original work because of a TBI.
In addition to therapy and rehabilitation, there is an assortment of financial issues and costs that may arise as a result of your TBI. While the most obvious costs will be your medical expenses, many TBI patients also have to cope with loss of income, increased dependency on loved ones and stressful insurance billing disputes. However, with rehabilitation and support from trained professional advocates, you may be able to regain the life you once had before your TBI.